“Everyday Blessings” Part VI ~ Book Discussion & Tea Party - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 330 Old 05-31-2003, 12:34 PM
 
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Wow, I am a musician too (piano, but don't have access to one since I moved out of my parents' house, miss it sooooooo much).

Absolutely no chance of a homebirth, much less unassisted. I'm lucky I got DH to consider a birth center. Looks like there is ONE covered CNM w/in 25 miles of me (and she's almost that far). Guess where I'll be having my first prenatal appt? I am thinking about fighting the insurance company while I go ahead and do what's covered, with the idea that if some miracle occurred and they covered a BC, I could switch at that point.

Analisa, Mama to Meg 12/12/01, Patrick 12/24/03, Catherine 12/24/03, Ben 2/26/06
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#62 of 330 Old 05-31-2003, 03:08 PM
 
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Okay, El, if your answer is the same as mine I'm gonna buy a plane ticket tomorrow and come visit you. These days, I usually gig as a conductor rather than as a performer, but my primary instruments are flute and voice, with a healthy dose of piano (used more for rehearsals and accompanying now) to boot. The funny thing is that I am definitely not a "flute" personality - I'm more of a double-reed gal, I think. (Whatever that means...!) I definitely want ds to play an instrument - piano is a given, but I've been thinking a lot about the cello. Dh is very into that idea. Ds is already really musical - hooray!

Okay - your turn!
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#63 of 330 Old 05-31-2003, 08:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Annalisa~Great! I'm glad you have figured something out. I dont know if we have a birth center here, but I highly doubt it! I've met most of the midwives in my town and there's no way I would feel comfortable enough with them to even consider that route. I already went down to our county recorders office a few months ago to get the paperwork to file for a birth certificate. I was wondering what all is involved. Dh and I are pretty serious about doing an unnassisted (obviously this was not a spur of the moment decision we made. But we will make sure we can get into a hospital if needed at the last second--we live minutes from 4 hospitals). I know your decision is best for your situation. I guess I feel better off on my own next time. KWIM? I dont want another episitome and two months healing time. I am a great candidate to do it at home. It will be at least another year or more before you can read my baby's birth story.

I wish I were musical! I love to sing, but cant read music. One day I may learn. You all are so awesome!

Gotta run...we're goin' fishing!
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#64 of 330 Old 06-01-2003, 11:19 AM
 
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I love to sing too. Singing religious songs makes me feel closer to God, singing kid songs makes me feel closer to Meg, etc. Good stuff!

How was fishing?

We got to meet a brandy-new teeny tiny baby last night. Meg tried to hit her with her doll (probably b/c I just wouldn't put that baby down).

Analisa, Mama to Meg 12/12/01, Patrick 12/24/03, Catherine 12/24/03, Ben 2/26/06
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#65 of 330 Old 06-01-2003, 11:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I stayed up way too late last night! We had fun fishing, but didnt catch anything. Dh went out later and caught 4 fish with a friend at a different location near our home. The mosquitos were like vampires too. Thanks for asking! I haven't held a newborn since ds was a newborn. I bet you were so excited and cant wait to meet your baby.

Well where to begin on this chapter?? I am pressed for time at the moment but I REALLY love this chapter!!! I makes me so excited about being a mom and about my relationship with ds and our future kiddos/teenagers. Last night when we were fishing it was awesome to have ds sit on my lap and just be. Then on the way home he wanted to hold my hand in the car (I was sitting next to him). Touching is a huge part of being a mama. And this chapter also reminded me that touch also helps us to "be in touch." Kinda like being in tune. :bf

CLINK Here's to being in touch! Reach out and touch somebody you love today...
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#66 of 330 Old 06-01-2003, 10:26 PM
 
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this chapter is good.

i can remember when dd was in kindergarten - i was sitting with the teacher, when dd ran up to us in tears and my first instinct was to ask, "whats wrong?" while at the same time the teacher (an excellent waldorf teacher) opened her arms to hold her first, and then asked what was wrong. dd went right into her arms, and immediately calmed.

i remember being a little embarrassed, and a lot surprised by my lack of awareness to that need. but i did learn from that, and became aware of my tendancy to talk through things when often a hug was all that was needed.

it seems to carry a lot of weight in funky situations. i also have done the floor thing,without being aware of how it could ground ds, though looking back, it always does! he becomes as delighted and lovey as can be when i lay on the floor with him.

we still nurse which is cause for much touching, but even beyond that, this chapter reminds us of the smallest moments too. i read once about a gentle touch when on the phone, and the child wants you. instead of shushing them, just gently patting or rubbing their back in acknowledgement, while being able to finish the conversation. that has helped too.
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#67 of 330 Old 06-03-2003, 12:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Right on, Cheryl!!! We missed you around here. It's hard to imagine you not being in tune at some point in your life. You seem so "with it." Sounds like your daughter is in a very nice school. I never had a teacher I wanted to hug me or that was that in tune with the students. I was in public school. And in public schools I think many teachers are afraid to get physical for fear that a child will misread the attention. KWIM?

Here's a quote from the "Touching" chapter for anyone that hasnt read it (and I hope you will...it's a warm fuzzy one and short but SWEET!)~"Being held with sensitivity grounds us in our bodies and awakens a sense of connectedness. I awakens us to ourselves and to the other...Learning to be "in touch" with how you feel while you are young grows out of this experience of feeling safe and cared for. Through holding, hugging, cradling, snuggling, smelling, swinging, rocking, humming, chanting, singing, gazing, parent and child both experience the fullness of being alive." (page 195-196)

It's so WEIRD how being a parent can change a person. Before I was a mother hugging a friend or family member was just a friendly expression to show concern or love. It was not anything moving to me. Sometimes I even felt uncomfortable hugging, even a family member. I never really felt at home in my body....KWIM? I was more like a shell and felt almost hollow...no soul...no real earth shattering thoughts either. Anyway, you know where this is leading so I'll skip ahead. Honestly, I never realized how much I was missing out on being a mother. Touching ds and smelling him make me feel soooo totally alive. I love nursing him but it's so much more than knowing I am giving him the best. It's the warm, sweet baby touching me. It's like giving back to the baby in me that surely didnt get all he is getting...which in return is giving to me and dh! It's like a drug! I must admit, some of the best huggers I know are mothers and grandmothers! Especially the ones that have experienced a loss. They know how precious life really is.

Warm and happy thoughts, mamas!

P.S. Been keeping my cool and staying in tune this week since my last outburst with ds. I have to agree with which ever one of you said "how you handle the outburst after it happens is the important part." It's so hard not to feel like a wicked witch though! But heck we all have our moments when we just "loose it."
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#68 of 330 Old 06-03-2003, 12:52 AM
 
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Originally posted by Curly Locks
Right on, Cheryl!!! We missed you around here. It's hard to imagine you not being in tune at some point in your life. You seem so "with it." Sounds like your daughter is in a very nice school. I never had a teacher I wanted to hug me or that was that in tune with the students. I was in public school. And in public schools I think many teachers are afraid to get physical for fear that a child will misread the attention. KWIM?
I taught in a Catholic school for three years, and unfortunately, it's the same way there. So sad.

Haven't read the chapter yet...not sure when I will if I spend all my reading time SLEEPING these days!

Analisa, Mama to Meg 12/12/01, Patrick 12/24/03, Catherine 12/24/03, Ben 2/26/06
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#69 of 330 Old 06-03-2003, 01:28 AM
 
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missed you guys too! lots of summer projects etc. but still always reading along in spirit.

and congrats megs mom! very exciting!
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#70 of 330 Old 06-03-2003, 08:19 PM
 
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Hey Mamas,

I'm like Heather in the sense that I used to not be a very touchy person, but now my physical little guy has really warmed me up. Altho now that you mention it, I was a *very* affectionate Kg teacher -- used lots of hugs and pats and hi-5's and almost always had a child on my lap -- and it was a CRITICAL part of my teaching. The children responded SO well to being loved and frankly, I didn't give a damn if anyone thought I was too close to them. I was young, though, and somewhat of a revolutionary (for the public schools, at least), so it may be that I was playing with fire and didn't know it.

Max has taught me so much about touch. He INSISTS on physical contact, and always has. Really, he was not put down before he was 5 mos old. And even now, dh and I have to wear short sleeves when we put him to sleep so he can stroke our arms. Seriously, we couldn't figure out what changed when the weather got cold, but all of a sudden, he couldn't fall asleep, until dh realized that we were always in long sleeves.

And Max's need for touch has made me more compassionate toward dh's needs -- which I used to resent. Yup, these two physical guys were sent to me to break down my walls!

Hmmm. Did I ever answer the instrument question? I don't think so . . . I played violin and sang in choral groups thru college and then took piano lesons (as a beginner!) when I was in grad school. I was not a Suzuki kid, unfortunately, so I was never "good" in my mind, and therefore didn't practice, and so on and so on. Music is SUCH an important part of our lives though, and dh plays guitar for ds, so I feel like I really need to pull out my violin and model playing an instrument for ds. I am really scared of sounding horrible, but know that I need to get over that. (BTW, when I had to choose an instrument in elem school, I wanted to play cello, but decided it would be too difficult to carry on the bus each day! Yes, that's how these important decisions are made!)

So Karen, you are not 100% bizarro-El, but close enough for me!
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#71 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 12:23 AM
 
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Hey all! I am also living with a very touchy 3 year old. Both of my children must be touching me to sleep it seems. I really need space, so it is hard on me when I don't feel like I am getting some separation. Tonight, DD just was having ahard time separating at sleep time - but she's asleep now and I'm getting my precious moments....

From "Atunement"

"When he gets what he wants, he feels his power; he feels satisfied, safe, peaceful. "

I find that this is a hard concept during the hard toddler phase where there seems to be a constant conflict of needs. Toddler needs to throw the rice all over the floor. mother needs the rice to go into toddler and not onto floor.

How do we preserve our child's sense of self, without squashing them? I find setting limits particularily hard when I am feeling powerless.

Anyway - I am also a musician - piano and violin as a child - always sang and voice was my instrument in college. Sang as a Soprano section leader for years in church choirs and did one SAG job before I became a full-time mommy!
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#72 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 10:59 AM
 
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Originally posted by Iguanavere
How do we preserve our child's sense of self, without squashing them? I find setting limits particularily hard when I am feeling powerless.
boy you said it- when you are feeling powerless. i find that to be one of my fears. a gift from childhood no doubt, when i felt i had no power. my dad was immature. like being raised by a child. so consequently, he abused his power b/c it never seemed fair. he was one to get back at you, and not be the bigger one. all looking back i realize this of course.

so i struggle with the feeling of loss of power. and strangely, it is hard not to project this outward to "protect" my children from people who abuse this power. by abusing my power!

being aware of this makes it easier, b/c i have to stop and think about where the child is coming from, rather than what is "happening to me" as i start to perceive it.

obviously, it turns out not to be anything about me. like the rice for example (b/c i am too tired to think of my own- just woke up). i might make that a personal affront, and instead of intercepting the fun with a calm and loving attitude, i might intercept it angrily and frustrated.

i think that becomes the difference for me. ds has learned what the question means when i say "are you all done?" b/c when i see him start throwing his food, it tells me he is all done. so it is cheerfully "okay, all done!" and if he wasn't, and still wants to eat, then i let him sit and eat, but if he throws food again, he is "all done!" not mad, but matter of fact. it takes some repeats, but he gets the picture, and hopefully doesn't come away from it feeling shamed for his natural desire to wreak havoc across my kitchen!

sorry if that was a rhetorical question. but it rang a bell in my head.

be well all!
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#73 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 01:46 PM
 
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Yes,

Originally posted by Iguanavere
How do we preserve our child's sense of self, without squashing them? I find setting limits particularily hard when I am feeling powerless.

I totally agree with this. And it is often when I feel powerless that I lose my temper and get angry. In fact the last time I lost it was an extended period of feeling powerless.

I do the same thing with food throwing, All done? and then I clean up any mess. Still, there are many many times when my limits seem to be all over the place and I can't seem to get my act together.

I am not a musician by any measure. I love the visual arts. DH is the musician and I think DD is trying to be an opera singer. LOL. she is trying to reach higher and higher notes with her voice and it is really cute. The first time she did it DH and i just looked at eash other in surprise.

OK, more from me later.
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#74 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 02:23 PM
 
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Well, this is not about touch or attunement, per se, but while we're on the limit-setting topic (and throwing food), I just wanted to share that dh and I have just recently started saying "that's not OK" and it is *really* working well with ds. He is 20 1/2 months, and we say this after a positive statement about what IS ok ("Max, food is for eating") and then doing exactly what you all do ("You look like you're all done"), but we found that he is now throwing food for the sake of limit testing, and you know, it really is NOT okay anymore. He can really huck a handful of rice these days (or black-eyed peas, or BLUEBERRIES, onto our cream-colored carpet!!!), and I just asked myself if I thought he was mature enough to understand this concept. And he is. And as soon as he's out of his hichair, we're off looking for balls to throw, bc (say it with me), "BALLS are for throwing."

Why am I telling you all this? I guess because it was an important breakthrough for me in figuring out where my needs intersect (and COLLIDE) with his, and respecting that my needs are important too AND he's getting old enough to be asked to respect them as well.

Also, I guess I'm always questioning whether or not I'm using the most gentle, non-coercive means possible, and this one feel okay to us ("that's not OK") even tho some would say it's too directive.

Oh, and did I mention that it works? After 2 or 3 nights of this, ds plucked his bowl (still full of kidney beans and rice) and handed it to dh saying, "Maxie all done eatin'. Daddy take da bowl.". It was so cute. Almost like saying, "Somebody STOP me!!!!"
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#75 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 02:32 PM
 
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funny el- like he wants you to stop him.

when my ds is about to do something on the "all done" list- he is starting to tell our dog what he can and can't do. he likes bossing the dog around to feel better about his own limits.

aren't they cute?
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#76 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 06:14 PM
 
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Hi all

Your posts about these toddler moments that can feel so frustrating or try one's patience have me thinking, "How would the same scene be if we were *not* so attached to our children?" What I mean is, my sense from each of you describing relationships with your dear children is that there is a history there of their while lives thus far filled with touching, holding, nursing, snuggling, etc., and general attempts at empathy overall (even if we don't always feel like we are perfect in any of it! : ).

And so we have some strong connections with our babes as they become toddlers and it is just so clear to me that this changes the way we are able to react to them and the way they react to us. Dd really does seem to trust me. I try not to correct her constantly, but when I do redirect or give a limit as you describe, she really seems to assume most of the time that mommy has a good idea & it's in her best interest. She seems to understand that I tend to suggest fun things or that she tends to end up safe when she follows my suggestions.

I am comparing this to babysitting experiences where I often feel at a loss to constructively influence the actions of a toddler I don't know well. I can't imagine trying to go through the challenges of toddlerhood less "attached" than dd & I are. Even though it's not going to be a breeze, I remind myself it would probably be much more painful all around without the foundation of empathetic responses, trust, affection, etc.

Hmmm... that made a lot of sense in my head but may not have come out well as I typed quickly. Oh well.

anne

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#77 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 09:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ditto on everything! I HATE feeling powerless and yet I HATE it when I am an ogar and use my power (my mom was good at being a either a doormat or an ogar and in between). Most days we have sensible limits but some days it ALL goes out the window.

I cant imagine what my life would be like now w/o all the "touching." I cant bear to think of my life (or ds's future) any other way! We went to the zoo today and between the animals living in captivity that have the "sad" eyes and the babies in strollers with "sad" eyes that seem so "unattached" it makes me sorta not want to go to the zoo anymore.

CLINK (ds in need )
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#78 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 10:32 PM
 
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We, too, have been dealing with the limit-testing/setting issues here, and we use the "all done" in a firm voice, too, when ds decides it's more fun to paint with the yogurt than eat it.:

Here's our latest problem, though - he has begun to bite me and dh. He never does it to anyone else, including other children. It generally happens when he is frustrated and isn't getting his way, but it also sometimes happens when we're playing (one of his favorite games of late is to run at me, full-steam ahead, and throw himself into my arms... and sometimes bites my arm when he gets there). Have any of you had this issue? I'm finding it difficult to handle. I have tried saying something like "Biting hurts Mommy" and then getting up and removing myself from the situation, but that doesn't always work. Sometimes he then follows me and bites my leg, too. Then it becomes a power struggle, and (as we have all said before) it is SO much more difficult to handle once I get into that place of powerlessness/lack of control.

That being said, I know that ds loves to touch and be held, and I love it, too. I just need to figure out how to redirect this biting thing.

El, my sister plays the violin! How fun to know that there are so many musicians in this group... no wonder we're so in tune with one another (yuk yuk yuk...)!
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#79 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 11:44 PM
 
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Yeah, I too was impressed by how many musicians we have here . . . wonder what that says about music and AP? Hmm. Oh well. That's the extent of my deep thought tonight. I'm too tired to take it any further!

K: We've not had the biting, but just recently went thru pretty much the same thing with ds hitting me -- clearly for fun and CLEARLY to get a reaction -- and my reactions ran the full spectrum as I tried to find one that made an impression on him. (Apparently, "NO! I don't like that!" and "That makes me Mommy sad." are the FUNNIEST things ever uttered by a human.) : I eventually got out of it by just distracting him.

Wait, that's not true. I actually refused to pick him up in the midst of the hitting frenzy, bc every time I did, he would clock me in the face and laugh hysterically. Once I refused and said, "No. I don't want to pick you up right now bc you're making me sad." He freaked a little. I wondered at the time if I was using abandonment as a threat, but the truth was, I *didn't* want to pick him up and he WAS making me sad!!! And I never left him. In any case, I let him cry at my feet for about 45 seconds, then I picked him up and *quickly* redirected his attention.

Since then, each time I sense the hitting about to commence (it's more like tapping, really, but it's the thought that counts, I think), I say, "Mommies are not for hitting. Mommies are for hugging and kissing." and then I 1) get the heck away from him -- as subtly as possible -- so he can't make contact and then 2) redirect.

Hmm. Maybe this is IS on the topic of Touch!

I don't know if this will help you. I have found that for my little guy, going head-to-head with him with a resounding "NO" is just about the least effective thing I can do. He just has NO fear of me. Which is scary, when I'm in the moment and ovewhelmed and fresh out of ideas, and longing to resort to those old, learned patterns. But it's also wonderful, for all the obvious reasons.

Other thoughts on the biting?
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#80 of 330 Old 06-04-2003, 11:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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(added: El and I were posting at the same time) Ds needed to go to bed...he needed to be held and suck for an hour! I really felt powerless, but tried to stay calm. No sense in getting all freaked out, I'm all by myself tonight. He has been so needy lately b/c of the teething. Karen, I'm not sure how old yours is but my ds (18 months) seems to like biting and hitting when he is trying to tell me something like I am tired, I am hungry, I need to nurse...I am in need of your attention. Even tho' my ds may have a legitimate reason to reach out and whack me it still irks me. Maybe after awhile you will notice a pattern with yours. Funny how quickly they can get overstimulated and take it out on us. I have a habit of being very distant somedays and not so mindful or conscious of ds. Sometimes I forget I havent fed him lunch and then he starts having a meltdown w/ the whinies and hitting b/c he also needs a nap and we went to grandma's that morning too and ate all kinds of tainted crap since that's all they buy is processed food with the nasty food colorings and so and so on... Good luck to you! You'll figure it out. And if all else fails run the other way.

I know not all kids in strollers are detached (just in case you thought I was being harsh) but it bothers me when the kids cant even see the animals from way down in the stroller and the parents dont even pick them up or talk to them about what they are looking at. The kids and parents look like zombies or in a trance just trying to make it thru so they can get to the consession stand maybe? Somedays around our block we use the stroller so I can walk the dog and take ds and it is just easier on my back. But I really prefer to carry him. It makes me feel so in tune with his mood and needs. Funny how when he's had enough he will pat me on my breasts like he is thinking of "nana" comforting him so he can go home and rest. LOL. I dont even care what my neighbors think...at least not yet.

Really need to go sit in a more comfy chair and relax. I hope you are all well.

P.S. I have to share this (it has to do w/ touch)~ Today ds was kissing dh goodbye several times and I was just standing there staring off into space or something (depressed that I would be home w/o dh tonight again) and ds took his hand and pressed it on the back of my neck and said "mama." He was trying to lean me in to kiss dh as I usually do when he is leaving. It was so sweet. He is going to be one hell of a lover (how's that for a brag???? Angie) !!!!
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#81 of 330 Old 06-05-2003, 12:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I was just looking at my post and realize I forgot to mention that (you will be impressed) I have some really neat abstract prints a friend beautifully and colorfully painted a few years ago that I had matted and framed~
Perched on the edge of music (pheasant on a violin with a clarinet)
Play it again Sam (piano with a dog, cat, robin, squirral, and flowers)
Instruments of Nature (clarinet with flowers, lady bug, and butterfly)

Ds loves them (and so do I) and I look at them and dream of being musically talented (or even an artist) one day. Dh is not musical at ALL. My friend that painted them also sings and writes music but cant read music. She can play back her music by memory. Her boys can read music though. Her mother was an artist (not famous).

Peace!
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#82 of 330 Old 06-05-2003, 12:17 PM
 
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Originally posted by Breathe
"BALLS are for throwing."

Exactly what we do! I say, "Meg, we don't throw _____. BALLS are for throwing. Can you go find a ball to throw?" And she does.

With food throwing, I say, "Meg's all done" and start to put the food away. If she protests I give it back, if she throws, repeat ad nauseum.

Analisa, Mama to Meg 12/12/01, Patrick 12/24/03, Catherine 12/24/03, Ben 2/26/06
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#83 of 330 Old 06-05-2003, 01:18 PM
 
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okay- i have to add to the whole music thing. since everyone is sharing. i have history of singing in school choirs and later in my church choir, and now all the time just for fun- dd has played flute and reads music (but stopped- boo), and dh is a long time guitar/song writer- so our house is full guitars and a piano and music is a big part of our lives. lots of songs and dancing in the living room. geekin out as i fondly like to call it.

the biting thing. ds too had taken to running full charge into my arms, and i noticed a few times him starting to bite but more out of a big fat feeling. i distracted him with a big hug thing and it seems to have ended but i know it could easily become a big issue with just one hard bite where i can't help but react. crossing fingers.

ds went through a phase of hitting dh on the head with the phone when dh wasn't paying attention to him and it became a bit of an issue w/dh. he wasn't doing it to me, so i know it turned into a pattern with them for awhile. dh would get mad and put him down but ds couldn't seem to help himself sometimes. it has stopped now though.

i'll tell you what drives me nuts though, is ds insistance on finding and fondling the opposite nipple when he is nursing. i can only stand it for a second but ds will NOT give up! i could probably do the "all done" thing, but i haven't had the heart. oh well. have to pick my fights carefully as they say.
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#84 of 330 Old 06-05-2003, 02:49 PM
 
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I can't get any of the inline quoting to work, so bear with me...

First off, giant congratulations to Analisa. You're going to have to change your username though!

And second, Heather, I love the image of your ds ensuring that you get included in the love. What a sweetie. I am sure that we're creating a group of fantastic lovers here.

Cheryl, I feel for you with the twiddling. I can't stand it and end up guarding the other nipple with my life. I tell Finn that it makes me uncomfortable, it hurts, or just that I don't like that, but I do think they are possessed to do it. Instead, he wraps his hands around my bra straps (which are Bravados, so there are lots of straps to grab) and when he falls asleep I have to carefully disentangle him.

Breathe - We haven't had a biting issue for awhile. I wonder if your ds would understand that he causes a boo boo and that it's horrible to end such a fun time with someone getting hurt. Maybe instead of biting, you could suggest that he says something (like whee. finn loves to pretend to sneeze so maybe achoo) and that would give him something else to do with his mouth.

And, Anne, I think that you're right that to me the connection (though sometimes not as strong as it could be) is what gets me through the day. Most of my frustrations come from having "unrealistic expectations

oops finns up

angie

Angie, Mama to Finn (6/01) and Theo (4/05)
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#85 of 330 Old 06-05-2003, 03:11 PM
 
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Coupla things . . .

Anne, I meant to say that I agree with you 100% that being atached makes this stage SO much easier. I find that mothering a toddler could be one long NO after another -- I mean, ds can find the boundary in ANY activity (pushing his toy lawn mower into the street, repeatedly; hitting the china cabinet with his drumstick, repeatedly; putting pebbles in his mouth and then running away, repeatedly). I mean, the day can become so tedious when every activity ends with me having to say NO, either literally or figuratively.

So what I don't get, is how could you POSSIBLY ever say YES if you weren't REALLY in tune with your child and REALLY empathetic to their needs? I mean, how can you say YES to playing in the rain, if you don't see its magic from your child's perspective? How can you say YES to jumping on the bed, or tasting Mommy's ginger beer, or stomping in really muddy puddles, or finger painting with black beans, or playing in the 3x3 patch of grass outside the restaurant for a few minutes, or ***getting out of the stroller at the zoo***, if you don't relate to your child's BURNING desire to explore the world from every angle and upside down? And if you hardly ever say YES, what on EARTH must your day with a toddler be like?!?!

Also just wanted to add for Karen that I was remembering from my child development classes that biting is very often done out of frustration by not being able to communicate what you need/want (as several others have suggested). Are you signing with him? And naming his feelings for him? I bet you are doing both, but I wonder if you could create a sign for frustrated -- like hitting your palm with your fist (or is that too violent?). And maybe when he bites you during play he's trying to tell you how much he loves you (yes, a big fat feeling!). Can you say, "Oh you love Mommy SOOOO much. You can hug and kiss Mommy, but biting is not okay, etc, etc."

I'm sorry if this is all BTDT for you -- just trying to help you cover the bases. Good luck and keep us posted!

H: LOVED the story about your ds wanting you to kiss dh!!!!!

Angie & Cheryl: SO sorry about the twiddling! That is truly one of my LEAST favorite sensations in the WORLD!!!
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#86 of 330 Old 06-05-2003, 11:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Heaven help me if ds was a twiddler...the last few days I have been feeling very overwhelmed and tonight I even had a scary thought. The house next door has been for sale about a month so I am toying with the idea of joking with my inlaws to move next door. They wouldnt and I would regret it later (NO DOUBT!!!) but I could use more support. Those of you that have wonderful family close by, you know how lucky you are!! Today I had an anxiety attack about my house needing to be cleaned. We've been putting it off the last few weeks and the carpet upstairs was covered (well almost) in black dog hair, toys, shredded paper, etc. The clutter was mounting too. Floors needed sweeping. So I was all geared up and ready to go. But ds was not. He was whiney and wanted me to hold him. I felt so incredibly annoyed and POWERLESS!!! It's times like today when I want to (and DID) cry and yell at ds to leave me alone so dh and I could clean JUST FOR ONE HOUR!!!! And ya know what he got the message. And it's always this way w/ ds when I am trying to clean. (AT LEAST IT SEEMS). Maybe I am setting myself up to fail??? I dont mind when he wants to help me in the kitchen cooking cuz i'm only in one place NOT ALL OVER THE HOUSE or room.

So anyway, my point is that I know ds is teething and in a lot of pain so I could have beat the crap out of him instead of just getting frustrated and yelled a little. I know all the touching, cuddling, nursing (prolactin and oxytocin) helps me be a more patient mother and try to realize things from his point of view (even if it's after the fact and I have to eat my words and sincerely apologize for being frustrated or yelling). But I am surely to the point that I WANT AND NEED to feel productive in other areas of my life too. Being the main caregiver to a teething (AND SOMETIMES CRANKY) toddler is a huge strain on me some days. But I cringe at the thought of what it would be like on the other side of coin. BUT sometimes the grass seems greener...Like just tossing him in a crib at night or naps and saying night, night time and leave the room after the bedtime routine is done...YEAH RIGHT! He freaks if dh and I both arent in the room lately.

The only thing keeping me sane and loving (95% of the time) is knowing (LEAP OF FAITH, MAMAS) that one day ds will look at me when he is an adult and I know that I am an awesome mother and that I love him completely w/o a doubt in his mind. Of course I'm certain I am raising someone really important other than a future father and husband too. Ever since he was conceived and also at two months old I had a strange intuition that he was someone very important, other than my son. Maybe all mothers have this vision. But mine was very haunting. Therefore, I always feel this nagging in the back of my mind that I better do a damn good job or it will come back to haunt me. It's a compulsive feeling that never seems to go away until I break and have to strart over. I must be insane.

Peace!! And hugs to all!! We're all in this together somehow. When I cry and am afraid that I will never make it another day I know I am not alone. We are all on this journey (motherhood) for the good and the hard days too.
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#87 of 330 Old 06-06-2003, 02:58 PM
 
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Hi, everyone! Thanks for all of the comments about biting - hope I didn't hijack the thread, but it's a form of touch, right?! El, we do sign with ds and we do name his feelings, but it hadn't occurred to me to make up a sign for frustrated. Duh. I know it's because he can't always communicate what he wants, but it's more often that he DID communicate what he wants and he isn't getting it (like yes, he has to either hold my hand or be carried across the street). We'll have to think up a good sign. Thanks so much for the thought.

It just took me 45 minutes to get him to go down for a nap. His day care provider tells me that he has begun to put himself down - no need for a backrub, song, or even a paci. I am sure she has never let him cry, but I suspect it's because there is another little boy there (about the same age) who also naps at around the same time. Positive peer pressure or something. Actually, come to think of it, dh can get ds to sleep pretty quickly, too. Must be the boobs...

Heather, big hugs to you. Our next door neighbor just put her house up on the market - anyone want to move to WI?!! I completely understand your desire to have family around to help - we don't have anyone close by, either, and it can be really hard. You'll get through this patch, just be gentle on yourself. We just inherited a cat who, although sweet as can be, sheds more than I ever thought possible AND has taken to marking her territory. Delightful. So, think of it this way - your house may be more cluttered than mine at the moment, but at least it isn't also stinking with cat pee...

Off to use the Nature's Miracle on the corner of the carpet...
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#88 of 330 Old 06-06-2003, 03:33 PM
 
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Our next-door neighbors just put their house on the market, too, no joke!

Think it's our hippie parenting that's driving all these people away?!?

Jacq, when do you plan to make an offer?

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#89 of 330 Old 06-06-2003, 05:29 PM
 
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momcat,

DD is the same way, going to sleep no prob at daycare and now will finally go to sleep on her own at home. Well, I have to stay in the room with her. But nighttime takes forever! She needs an hour to wind down from the day and thought she doesn't need a boob anymore, at least not at the cvery end, she just takes forever. DH will fall asleep before she does. Ha ha.
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#90 of 330 Old 06-06-2003, 10:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks so much for the empathy, mamas! Today was better, except the F word flew out a few times and now I have an almost 18 month old that can say F#$%! And I turn around and say "luck" or "truck" which he then repeats and smiles. He's no dummy like his silly parents.

I know my neighbor is not moving cuz of us. They liked us so much they gave us their dog and just invited us to their upcoming wedding in June at the home the groom owns. We have nice neighbors overall. I'd happily move to WI or NC tho'.

Chow! I gotta hot date and no time to stall...ds is in need too. (I was gone half the day at a friend's house in case ya wondered if I had fallen off the earth. )

H
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